The airline company announces plans to restore flights with mandatory face masks and temperature checks for the crew and passengers.
Ryanair, Europe’s largest low fares airline, announced plans to return to 40% of normal flight schedules starting 1 July 2020. The decision comes as a result of the Government restrictions on EU flights being lifted, as well as effective public health measures ensured at airports. The company will operate a daily flight schedule of nearly 1,000 flights, with 90% of its pre-Covid-19 route network restored. You can find the full details of these routes, frequencies, flight times, and promotional prices on the official Ryanair website.
Since the Covid-19 flight restrictions in mid-March, Ryanair has been operating a skeleton daily schedule of 30 flights between Ireland, the UK and Europe. From July, Ryanair will restart flying from most of its 80 bases across Europe. There will be fewer daily/weekly frequencies on trunk routes, as Ryanair works to restore some services on the widest number of routes, rather than operating high-frequency services on a small number.
Ryanair also released a return to flying video, (click here) encouraging passengers to observe effective health measures to limit the Covid-19 virus. These include fewer checked bags, check-in online, downloading boarding pass to the passenger smartphone, as well as undergoing temperature checks at the airport entry and wearing face masks/coverings at all times in the terminal and onboard the aircraft. All Ryanair aircraft are fitted with HEPA air filters (similar to those used in critical hospital wards) and all aircraft interior surfaces are disinfected every night with chemicals, which are effective for over 24 hours. While temperature checks and face masks/coverings are the cornerstones of this healthy return to service, social distancing at airports and on board the aircraft will be encouraged where it is possible.
On board its aircraft, Ryanair cabin crew will wear face masks/coverings and a limited inflight service will be offered of pre-packaged snacks and drinks, but no cash sales. All onboard transactions will be cashless. Queuing for toilets will also be prohibited on board although toilet access will be made available to individual passengers upon request. Ryanair encourages passengers to regularly hand wash and use hand sanitizers at airport terminals.
As a temporary further public health measure, while EU States emerge from their respective Covid-19 lockdowns, Ryanair will require all passengers flying in July & Aug to fill in details (at the point of check-in) of how long their planned visit will be, and also their address while visiting another EU country, and this contact information will be provided to EU Governments to help them to monitor any isolation regulations they require of visitors on intra-EU flights.
The Company CEO Eddie Wilson stated: “It is important for our customers and our people that we return to some normal schedules from 1 July onwards. Governments around Europe have implemented a 4 month lockdown to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus. After 4 months, it is time to get Europe flying again so we can reunite friends and families, allow people to return to work, and restart Europe’s tourism industry, which provides so many millions of jobs.
Ryanair will work closely with public health authorities to ensure that these flights comply, where possible, with effective measures to limit the spread of Covid-19. As already shown in Asia, temperature checks and face masks/coverings are the most effective way to achieve this on short haul (1 hour) within Europe’s single market.
Now that Europe’s States are allowing some gradual return to normal life, we expect this will evolve over the coming weeks and months. With more than 6 weeks to go to 1st July, Ryanair believes this is the most practical date to resume normal flight schedules, so that we can allow friends and families to reunite, commuters to go back to work, and allow those tourism-based economies such as Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, France and others, to recover what is left of this year’s tourism season.